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Florida Current[′flär·ə·də ‚kə·rənt]
a powerful warm ocean current flowing from the Gulf of Mexico through the Straits of Florida into the Atlantic Ocean, where it joins the Antilles Current to form the Gulf Stream. The Florida Current, which is considered, at the same time, to be part of the Gulf Stream system of currents, primarily carries waters entering the Gulf of Mexico from the Caribbean Sea through the Yucatan Channel. Water temperatures are therefore very warm, ranging from 28°–29°C in the summer and 24°–25°C in the winter. Salinity in the main stream exceeds 36 parts per thousand. Near the Gulf of Mexico, the Florida Current is 140 km wide and 1,500 m deep, with a velocity reaching 145 cm/sec, or more than 5 km/hr, and a transport of 21–30 million m3/sec. The highest velocities—190 cm/sec, or 7 km/hr, in the summer and 130 cm/sec, or 4.5 km/hr, in the winter—have been observed 30 km from the coast, near the city of Miami. Volume transport throughout the stream varies according to the season; the mean transport is approximately 30 million m3/sec, with a maximum of 34 million in early summer and a minimum of 25 million in early winter.
REFERENCESStommel, G. Gol’fstrim. Moscow, 1963. (Translated from English.)
Niiler, P. P., and W. S. Richardson. “Seasonal Variability of the Florida Current.” Journal of Marine Research, 1973, vol. 31, no. 3.
Brooks, J. H., and P. P. Niiler. “The Florida Current at Key West: Summer 1972.” Ibid., 1975, vol. 33, no. 1.
A. S. POLOSIN